Rusch to Glory

Adventure, Risk & Triumph on the Path Less Traveled


Rusch to Glory shows how Rebecca Rusch went from ordinatory to extraordinary—and how anyone can discover their own greatness.

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Rebecca Rusch is one of the great endurance athletes of our time. Known today as the Queen of Pain for her perseverance as a relentlessly fast runner, paddler, and mountain bike racer, Rusch was a normal kid from Chicago who abandoned a predictable life for one of adventure. In her new book Rusch to Glory: Adventure, Risk & Triumph on the Path Less Traveled, Rusch weaves her fascinating life’s story among the exotic locales and extreme conditions that forged an extraordinary athlete from ordinary roots.

Rusch has run the gauntlet of endurance sports over her career as a professional athlete— climbing, adventure racing, whitewater rafting, cross-country skiing, and mountain biking—racking up world championships along the way. But while she might seem like just another superhuman playing out a fistful of aces, her empowering story proves that anyone can rise above self-doubt and find their true potential.

First turning heads with her rock climbing and paddling skills, Rusch soon found herself spearheading adventure racing teams like Mark Burnett’s Eco-Challenge series. As she fought her way through the jungles of Borneo, raced camels across Morocco, threaded the rugged Tian Shan mountains, and river-boarded the Grand Canyon in the dead of winter, she was forced to stare down her own demons. Through it all, Rusch continually redefined her limits, pushing deep into the pain cave and emerging ready for the next great challenge.

At age 38, Rusch faced a tough decision: retire or reinvent herself yet again. Determined to go for broke, she shifted her focus to endurance mountain bike racing and rode straight into the record books at a moment when most athletes walk away. Rusch to Glory is more than an epic story of adventure; it is a testament to the rewards of hard work, determination, and resilience on the long road to personal and professional triumph.

Rusch to Glory: Adventure, Risk, & Triumph on the Path Less Traveled
Rebecca Rusch with Selene Yeager
Paperback with three color photo sections.
6″ x 9″, 256 pp., $18.95, 9781937715250

Rusch to Glory: Adventure, Risk & Triumph on the Path Less Traveled

Paperback. Three color photo sections.

Shipping Dimensions: 6.00in x 9.00in x .75in 256pp $18.95, Inventory 9781937715250, Shipping 1.1lbs

Foreword by Mark Burnett
Introduction: The Wild Ride
1 Finding Myself at the Finish Line
2 Running Away From Home
3 Facing My Fears
4 Vehicle for Change
5 Learning Management Skills in Morocco
6 If at First You Don’t Succeed…
7 Exploring My Limits
8 Proving Grounds
9 A Heavy Crown
10 A New Beginning
11 A Big Year
12 Gaining Momentum
13 Riding for the Record Books
14 Winning & Losing
15 Keeping It Real
Epilogue: The Outer Limits
About the Authors

Preview book.

Rusch to Glory tells the story of Rebecca Rusch, a 38-year-old whose sporting career has had more twists and turns than the singletrack upon which she currently dominates the sport of ultra-endurance mountain biking. In this autobiography written with Bicycling’s Fit Chick, Selene Yeager, Rusch shares the story of her incredible career as an endurance athlete. Rock climbing, adventure racing, whitewater rafting, cross-country skiing—nothing has proven too tough for Rusch.” — Bicycling

“Dubbed the Queen of Pain by one adventure sports publication, Rusch would rather think of herself as the Queen of Perseverance. She’s not the strongest, the tallest or the fastest athlete out there, but she prides herself on never giving up.” — Sports Illustrated

Rusch to Glory is an easy read about the rise of Rebecca Rusch from an average Chicago kid to one of the best known female cyclists in the country and the determination it took to get there.” — Outside

“In a world that too often settles for mediocrity and conformity, Rebecca knows that the secret to success is being your best in all you do. And once you establish that baseline, you push through it.” — Mark Burnett, producer of Eco-Challenge and Survivor, from the foreword to Rusch to Glory

“There is perhaps no one who defines ‘jack-of-all-trades’ better than Rebecca Rusch. For more than 20 years, Rusch has explored her physical ability full of determination, without relent. Her drive as an ultra-endurance athlete and one of the most successful endurance mountain bikers in the world has brought her to success in just about every kind of adventure sport imaginable. Her compelling story of disappointment, heartbreak, and resilience is recounted in her book.” —

Rusch to Glory is an easy read—just sit back and relax and follow Rusch through her various endeavors. She does all the suffering, so you don’t have to. It may be the perfect book to give an aspiring young female athlete who is or will soon confront her own demons. When facing or about to face these kind of obstacles on the path to success, it’s nice to know you’re not alone and have a good example to follow.” —

“Reba’s 50% hard core racer, 50% advocate, 50% adventure seeker, and 100% inspiration. That adds up to 250%, which is just about right for her. And if you don’t already want to be just like her (I do), you will by the time you read the fun, funny, and always-down-to-earth story of her life. [Rusch to Glory] is a fantastic book, by a fantastic person.” — Fat Cyclist

“Rebecca Rusch turned to the bike to cement her position as one of the best endurance athletes in the world.” — VeloNews

“Rebecca is probably the greatest endurance mountain biker in history—male or female.” — Singletrack magazine

“You name it, Rebecca Rusch has tried it—get inspired by her adventures mountain biking, white-water rafting and climbing in exotic locations around the world.” —

“When your nickname is ‘The Queen of Pain,’ you probably have some good stories.” — Colorado Public Radio

“Written by multi-world and national champion mountain bike racer Rebecca Rusch (with Bicycling’s Selene Yeager), Rusch to Glory contains plenty of tales of riding and racing. But it’s not really about the bike, as they say. It’s about what you can achieve in all walks of life if you have tenacity, perseverance, and the courage to try when you’re afraid of failing. You may never river-board the Grand Canyon in the dead of winter or break records at the Leadville 100. But you’ll turn the last page inspired to face down a few of your own demons and find some adventures yourself.” —

“You name it, Rebecca Rusch has tried it—get inspired by her adventures mountain biking, white-water rafting and climbing in exotic locations around the world.” — Triathlete magazine

“The Queen of Pain continues to be one of the driving forces in the world of mountain biking…” — Mountain Flyer

“Rebecca Rusch of Ketchum is among the best endurance athletes on the planet, and how that happened is a fascinating story and a great read. She got a taste for adventure as a rock climber, then spun that into an adventure racer and mountain bike racing with lots of detours on the route to becoming a world champion. It’s an autobiography, adventure tale and inspiration for anyone who loves the outdoors. It’s told with humility and honesty.” — Idaho Statesman

“The book is a smooth read and a revealing and inspiring trip. I recommend it to anyone who is pursuing or is pondering the pursuit of a fit and active life.” —

“Rebecca’s book Rusch to Glory is as unique as she is, yet her journey toward achievement is universal and will touch anyone who has yearned to do more. Her book reminds me in many ways of one of my favorite books, Wild by Cheryl Strayed. Rusch to Glory pulls you along on an amazing, fascinating, courageous, yet very human, imperfect, and vulnerable journey.” — Patti DeNucci, author and speaker

“Rebecca Rusch is proof that will and tenacity are far more important than any other life skill a person can possess. It’s not just about the athletic feats, no matter how numerous and ludicrously awesome hers are. The fact that she succeeded, time and again, at a new sport (and a new life!) is a testament to hard work, intellectual curiosity, teamwork, and the attitude of a champion. And that lives in all of us.” — Robyn Benincasa, World Champion Adventure Racer, CNN Hero, Guinness World Record Holder, Founder/Minister of Dreams, Project Athena Foundation

“Rebecca Rusch [was] not just one of the top female racers out there, she [was] flat-out one of the best all-around [adventure] racers of either sex.” — Jacques Boutet, professional adventure racer